My last copy of The Word (as it was originally) just dropped through the letterbox. This is genuinely a very sad moment. I have read every issue of this magazine since it started to be published. I have had a subscription for years, renewing it in chunks of two years, secure in the knowledge that I would continue to enjoy it. It wasn’t one of those mags where, as soon as you subscribe, it goes all odd on you.
It seemed to be pitched right at me and my demographic. I’m not quite old enough for Mojo, and I always felt Q was too male. Word gathered writers I’d been reading for years, and talked about bands I’d loved for years. They also had a decent books and films section. There were always interesting long pieces of biography, history, technical stuff as well as straight band stuff. You could trust the reviews.
But print based media has run into all sorts of problems. Print based everything, actually: look at the state of the book publishing industry. Word diversified with an iPad app and brilliant podcasts, but it wasn’t enough. What a shame.
Latterly, I’ve had the privilege of working for two excellent writers who regularly had pieces published in Word: Rob Fitzpatrick and Jude Rogers. I have transcribed many interviews for both of them, and so there was an added joy of coming across articles for which I’d transcribed the interviews, and seeing what the writer had done with the material. As a writer myself, and aware that much of the material I transcribe I will never see again, this added a marvellous dimension to my reading of the magazine; added to the joy. Thank you, Jude, for taking me on off the back of a Tweet, and Rob for taking the recommendation (and both for recommending me on to other people). They have been great clients and I know they have plenty of other irons in the fire, but I hope they and all the other employees and freelancers associated with the magazine find something to fill that Word-shaped hole in their lives.
I know it will be difficult for me to do so. The balance of two running mags and a music mag coming through the letterbox every month is now irreparably altered.
Word Magazine, I will miss you.